Suspicious person driving a white Ford pickup

To: UC Santa Cruz Community

From: Nader Oweis, Chief of Police

The UC Santa Cruz Police Department is seeking the community's assistance in identifying a suspicious person who was driving on campus at approximately 11:25 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 28.

The subject, described as a male in his 30-40's and wearing a hat and orange shirt, was driving a white Ford pickup with CA license 8W91611. He approached a female student walking on Hagar Drive at Steinhart Way and asked if she needed a ride. The student flagged down Student Ambassadors working for the Police Department Night Safety Escort Service and reported the incident.

UC Santa Cruz police officers began searching for the subject and vehicle, and later located the vehicle as it was driving south on Coolidge Drive from the "lookout." Officers attempted an enforcement stop, which led into a pursuit around the campus, the upper west side of Santa Cruz, and north on Highway 1 toward Davenport.

For safety reasons, our officers ended the pursuit and the subject continued to flee north on Highway 1.

We are aware of several Twitter messages about this incident, and are asking anyone that may be able to provide additional information about this subject to immediately contact the UC Santa Cruz Police Department at 831.459.2231 ext. 1.

Additionally, we have received witness reports of a possible fourth-year Merrill College student named “Jay” who may have spoken to and can identify the driver of the vehicle. 

Safety Tips 

  • If you feel you or others are in danger, immediately call 911. 

  • Victims of crime and witnesses should report all crimes as well as any suspicious people or activity to UC Santa Cruz police when it is safe to do so by calling 911. 

  • Lock all doors and windows. Do not defeat any locking mechanisms or prop doors open. Do not allow people you do not know to "tailgate" into a locked facility behind you.

  • Be alert to your surroundings. Your actions can help prevent others from becoming victims. Attempt to keep a safe distance from strangers. 

  • Trust your instincts. If something or someone makes you feel uneasy, tell someone, avoid the person or leave the area. 

  • Encourage friends to travel in pairs or with trusted companions, especially at night or in remote areas. Use the Night Safety Escort Program, Monday through Thursday evening from 8:30 p.m. to 12:15 a.m. Call 831-459-2231, ext. 1.  

Campus Resources 

UC Santa Cruz is a community committed to being inclusive and welcoming of all people. We strive to provide a safe place for everyone to work and learn.

For students, a range of support services is also available through the Cowell Student Health Center, including personal counseling through Counseling and Psychological Services and support through a Confidential Victim Advocate.

For employees, the Employee Assistance Program can provide personal counseling and support.

This bulletin is in compliance with 20 U.S.C. Section 1092 (f), the "Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act" ("Clery Act"), and the Code of Federal Regulations.